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Gift of College* offers options for family and friends to make contributions to college savings accounts. A NextGen account owner can create an online gift registry at GiftofCollege.com and link it to his or her account. Relatives and friends can then use Gift of College to make gift contributions to the NextGen account online or to purchase a Gift of College gift card. Visit GiftofCollege.com to learn more!
A contribution to a 529 plan account is treated as a completed gift from the donor to the designated beneficiary of the account and qualifies for the annual federal gift tax exclusion ($14,000 in 2017). This affords a unique opportunity in which you can remove assets from your taxable estate while contributing to an account that you control. You may also be able to take advantage of a federal gift tax election that applies only to 529 plan contributions. This election allows you to make a lump-sum contribution up to five times the annual exclusion amount ($70,000 in 2017) per beneficiary in one year and elect to treat the contribution as if it was made ratably over five years avoiding federal gift tax liability, as long as you make no other gifts to the same beneficiary for the next five years. A married couple filing jointly generally can gift up to $140,000 in 2017. This gifting strategy may be an attractive option for grandparents wishing to help fund college for one or more grandchildren.³